You may have heard of the garbage truck accident that happened on I-95 in Miami on February 15th, 2016. The garbage truck actually fell off a ramp on I-95 and landed in the Jose Marti Park parking lot.
The driver was thrown from the vehicle. He visited Jackson memorial hospital afterwards to be checked out, and miraculously he was not seriously injured or killed. Check out a video of this accident here. The Florida Highway Patrol believes that it was driver distraction that caused this one-vehicle accident.
Accidents like this make you wonder—is accident liability different in Florida when a garbage truck is involved? What will happen legally if a garbage truck hits me?
In this case, you may even begin to wonder what happens if a garbage truck falls on you! The best way to find out your options after any type of car accident is to speak with a West Palm Beach truck accident attorney.
Find out more about general vehicle accident liability by clicking here.
Garbage Truck Accidents: Special Rules for Liability
Garbage trucks are like many larger vehicles on the road in Florida; they present unique hazards and dangers because they are so much larger than other vehicles. In addition, they are also more likely than other vehicles to “throw” things at the vehicles behind them. This can cause serious problems for all of the traffic around the garbage truck.
In some states or cities, the city and town, or community will provide garbage services for its citizens. However, in Florida, most garbage collection services are contracted out to individual companies.
If the state or city were employing people to collect trash, then the city’s special immunities for their employees may apply. In Florida, however, most citizens will not need to worry about that if they collide with a garbage truck.
An accident involving a garbage truck is much like getting into an accident with any other large commercial vehicle.
Large commercial vehicles have additional restrictions imposed by the state of Florida for things like:
- Driving times
- Driver qualifications
Knowing these extra rules are important if you are involved in an accident with a large commercial vehicle, such as a garbage truck.
When Accidents with Garbage Trucks Occur
Although you hear about accidents with garbage trucks on highways or the interstate, most accidents actually occur in residential neighborhoods. Garbage trucks spend the most time in these areas because they are constantly picking up garbage in various areas on a daily basis.
The trucks must stop frequently, making them a target for fender-benders. Accidents with pedestrians and the workers themselves are fairly common.
Common causes of garbage truck accidents include:
- Negligent truck drivers
- Inability to stop quickly
- Driver fatigue
- Failure to follow traffic signals or signs
- Malfunctioning equipment or reverse alert alarms
- Oversized loads
- Large blind spots
- Problems with stopping suddenly
Read more about other truck accident causes here.
Getting Legal Help from a West Palm Beach Truck Accident Attorney After a Collision with a Garbage Truck
Due to the size of these massive vehicles, an accident involving a garbage truck can cause severe damage and injuries.
If an incident were to occur, the company the driver is driving for would be involved in your dispute, as well as their attorney. Don’t let them take advantage of you by talking you into a settlement that will not even cover your medical expenses! Instead, call a West Palm Beach truck accident attorney to help protect your rights after an accident.